Make Your Own Rain Gauge

Make Your Own Rain Gauge – I was interested in a DIY rain gauge. The ones I’ve used for my rainwater workshop series in New Orleans are really good, but still between $30-40. There are cheaper ones you can buy, but I found a neat model that can be made from plastic bottles. However, in most cases it is oriented towards cutting off the top, inverting it, and adding a ruler to the side, but since most bottles are not narrow cylinders, they do not make accurate rain gauges. And it also doesn’t account for the radius of the bottle and how much rainfall it takes to make 1 inch of water in your gauge. So I did some research on more expensive rain gauge and plastic bottle models and came up with the following idea.

Expensive rain gauges have a 4-inch diameter opening at the top. Essentially, if you make the circumference of the plastic bottle the same, the measurements on the container will be the same.

Make Your Own Rain Gauge

I placed a soda bottle upside down in an expensive rain gauge and measured whether they had the same circumference.

How To Make A Rain Gauge

On my soda bottle (are these standardized?) the circumference was exactly 4.5 inches from the top of the bottle (measured with the cap on). If you have a beverage bottle of a different shape, find a location with a circumference of 12.56 inches. This will also create a 4 inch diameter opening.

Then with a precision knife I cut the top of the bottle where my lines were. This worked fine, but I found two problems. One, as you can see in many other orientations, the top fell off when I put the top in the bottle upside down, and second, the edges were very sharp. So I lined the edges of both the bottom and top of the bottle with electrical tape to create more cushion for the top to sit on and secured the edges.

I measured 0.2in of water using the unit of measure provided by the more expensive rain gauge, poured it into a plastic cup to make it easier, and marked the cup it came out of. Then I put 0.2 inches of water into the bottle and started making marks where that amount of water came up in my bottle.

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Note: I will be measuring this amount in fluid ounces so others can do this with a liquid measuring cup.

How To Use A Rain Gauge To Monitor Irrigation Needs

I went ahead and marked my plastic bottle by measuring 0.2 inches of water and adding a 1 inch mark every 5 hashes.

Turns out, the 1 inch watermarks ended up being about an inch apart, excluding the first inch of water in my bottle, so the ruler gives a pretty good approximation, excluding the first inch of water. In the bottle I used, an inch of water covered about an inch and a half of the bottle space.

This saved me some math anyway! However, if you have bottles of different sizes, there are some calculations you can use to make your bottle rain gauge accurate (be warned, it’s metric..). Also, if you use a perfect cylinder or rectangle, you don’t have to do all the individual measurements on the side after taking the first one, they’re all the same (think Fiji or smart water bottles, have you ever seen a Pepsi bottle like this?). For some daytime fun, here’s how to make a really simple rain gauge using recycled materials! There are many opportunities to learn about measurement, number recognition, capacity and weather along the way!

We’ve recorded some of the most unbelievably consistent rainfall here in the South of England over the past 10 days, which has hampered many of our outdoor fun ideas. But we came up with a really easy way to measure the amount of rainfall so you can embrace it and do some playful learning!

Diy Rain Gauge Craft For Kids

I cut around the body of the bottle about 5cm down from the top. We simply turned it upside down and placed it inside the bottle, making sure it was pushed down and flush with the rim.

Our bottle already had a groove and I used an oil-based marker to draw around it. Make sure your lines are evenly spaced and ready to measure! Cakie took a ruler and tried reading the numbers again against the line I had drawn. I wrote the measurements in centimeters.

Next, donning welly boots and a raincoat (over the pie!) she went out to find a nice spot to put the bottle.

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She decided to pinch them between pots so they wouldn’t be blown away by the wind.

Make Your Own Rain Gauge

24 hours later, Cakie rushed out to check the water level on the rain gauge and she had already reached her first marker level of 4cm!!

It continues to rain and we are checking every day. The level rises by at least 2-4 cm per day… wow!

With older children I would consider making a line graph to chart the increase in rain and examine average monthly rainfall in the UK compared to the rest of the world.

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How To Make A Rain Gauge Out Of A Plastic Bottle: 9 Steps

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Any cookies that may not be specifically necessary for the website to function and are used to collect user personal data, in particular through analytics, advertising and other embedded content, are called non-essential cookies. You must obtain user consent before running these cookies on your website. This is the first in a series of meteorological science related posts. We’ll start by figuring out how to build a rain gauge. I did this a few weeks ago with my three children and they love to go outside every day to see how much it rains. Even my 2-year-old definitely helped me learn to recognize numbers.

There are two ways to make a rain gauge using empty or plastic bottles.

Make A Rain Gauge To Measure Rainfall

Cut off the top of the bottle and place it upside down inside the body. The edges can be sharp, so get an adult’s help.

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Bury the bottle outside. Stay away from trees that can trap rain in open areas. Make the top stick out. We didn’t ask ours very well. You’ll want to bury more of yours.

An important part of weather logging is that it needs to be done often. Record the amount of rain in the bottle each day and be sure to empty the rain each time.

Here are more weather science activity ideas, like making a pinwheel, making a storm in a jar, and more.

Build A Rain Gauge Steam Activity For Preschoolers

Science Sparks (Wild Sparks Enterprises Ltd) is not responsible for the activity of anyone using information from this resource or any additional resources suggested. Science Sparks assumes no responsibility in relation to any personal injury or property damage that may occur as a result of using the information contained in this resource or any additional resources suggested and performing actual activities.

These activities are designed to be performed by children working with parents, guardians, or other appropriate adults. The adult involved has full responsibility for ensuring that the activity is conducted safely. If you are looking for something fun and educational to do with your children at home from school, we have an experiment for you! You can make a rain gauge with a few simple things you probably already have at home!

First cut off the top of the 2 liter bottle. Cut low enough until the bottle is full size. You will need to readjust it later. Copy the ruler marks onto the masking tape using a maker and masking tape. This experiment measures all inches from 0 to 5, but you can measure half an inch if you prefer. Fill the bottle with medicine.

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